In my previous house, the AC units were designed to sit on the EAST wall so afternoon sun does not "bother" them. This was done for energy efficiency reason (just common sense, the AC units work against a heat gradient and do not need more heat from the sun).
In my current house, the AC units sit on the WEST wall. This summer was unusually HOT. My electricity bill this summer was very high.
My question is: Has anyone used any technique to shield AC units, particularly those baked by the afternoon sun (On the SOUTH wall or WEST wall)?
- Small trees to cover them?
- Small cedar shed?
Direct sunlight does increase heat and causes the unit to work harder and less efficient. Any shade that blocks the sun but does not interfere with air flow or access to the unit will improve operations. You may have leaves fall in the unit but these can be easily removed.
Found some info
1. Florida has done this experiment before. This is very scientific:
Contrary to my intuition, there is little saving with using tree shades!
2. This is not scienticfic but listed for reference:
The sun shining on the outdoor unit has very little impact on its performance, if any.
Shading the unit won't do a thing for it. Most attempts at shading the units result in reduced performance because it interferes with the air flow around the unit.
The best thing you can do is make sure that air is able to move freely through the area. Frequently the outdoor unit is sitting on the side of the house between the house and a privacy fence, often behind the fence separating the front and back yards.
Even if all the clearances are good around the unit, air gets trapped in that area. It isn't unusual for me to find situations like that where the entering air temperature for the outdoor unit is 5-15º higher than the actual ambient temperature, even on the shaded side of the home.
[Edited by mark beiser on 11-10-2005 at 11:48 PM]
If you can prove that is cooler in the shade then this will help the conderer. The condenser deal with air on temp.
I tend to agree dont waste your time..